Shaun White is a legend in snowboarding. In fact, he is a legend in Winter Sports competitions in general. He isn’t known for his unique sense of style, his wealth, or his red hair, he is known for his ability to take something awesome and make it extremely awesome. He proved that last night during his halfpipe run. After his first run, he secured himself a gold medal. His second run counted for nothing, he already had the gold, but that would just be awesome, not extreme enough for Shaun White.
After conferring with his coach, Shaun decided to do his signature move, a move so dangerous he almost gave up trying to master it (according to the news, but I doubt Shaun ever really considered giving up anything). He decided to add the “Double McTwist” at the end of his routine. For those, like myself, who know just about nothing about snowboarding, a Double McTwist is 3 and a half spins and two complete flips. That’s enough to make anybody dizzy.
Despite the fact that he already had the gold in the bag and despite the fact that his setup did not go perfectly and he did not have the speed necessary to pull the trick off right, Shaun successfully completed the Double McTwist to the cheers of millions of fans at the competition and at home. Shaun lived something his coach said to him just before this phenomenal run, “Snowboarding is supposed to be fun.” Even though it didn’t change the outcome (though he ended up getting a score two points higher than his first run), he did it because it was what he was born to do, it is what he enjoys.
My challenge for you today, whether you are a children’s pastor in a small town, a megachurch, whether you are staff or volunteer, or even if you are in some other ministry, is to go big even when it doesn’t matter. I can show up this Sunday morning and give my kids a stock message with just enough passion to keep their attention. I can go through the motions and they will probably say, “That was awesome.” But if I can do a Double McTwist and I choose not to do a Double McTwist, I leave my run awesome but not extremely awesome. Maybe the same five kids show up every week whether you do a great job or not. It doesn’t matter. This is the moment you were born for, it is hopefully what you enjoy. Give those five kids the absolute BEST service you can muster.
Listen folks, ministry is supposed to be fun! Have fun and take a chance. Try something new in your ministry. Even when it may not change the outcome, shouldn’t we give our kids the very best? Don’t we owe them that much? Don’t we owe God that much?
*Editor’s note: Ministry ALWAYS counts, but sometimes it can SEEM as though it doesn’t matter. The point is that even if we knew ahead of time that the same kids are going to heaven whether we do something or not, we should still do our very best.